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Buffalo Bills NFL draft picks 2021: Analysis for every selection

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Gregory Rousseau's NFL draft profile (0:52)

Check out the best highlights from Miami DE Gregory Rousseau's college career. (0:52)

The 2021 NFL draft was held April 29 through May 1 and every Buffalo Bills draft pick has been analyzed here.

After last season's virtual draft, Cleveland played host to festivities this year with a handful of potential draft picks present and socially distanced because of COVID-19.

Here's a pick-by-pick look at how each player Buffalo has selected will fit.

Analysis of every NFL pick | Updated NFL depth charts


Round 1, No. 30 overall: Gregory Rousseau, DE, Miami

My take: Selecting Rousseau made perfect sense considering how the board played out. Buffalo has an impending need at defensive end and wouldn't be able to get one with Rousseau's ceiling if it waited any longer. He is still learning the position but should be able to contribute as both a defensive end and interior pass-rusher. Next to 2019 first-round pick Ed Oliver, he could provide the type of pressure Buffalo often lacked last season.

Still developing: Bills general manager Brandon Beane lauded Rousseau's production in 2019 (19.5 tackles for a loss, 15.5 sacks) -- especially considering the former high school safety is "still growing into his body." Beane noted Rousseau added 20 pounds since the last time he played in 2019. The Miami product opted out of the 2020 season, but said he "didn't take any time off," using the year away from the game to train and take care of his family. Beane said Rousseau isn't being penciled in as a starter but expects him to "impact the rotation" as a rookie.

What it means: With Jerry Hughes and Mario Addison still on the roster, the Bills can be patient with Rousseau and allow him to develop at a position that is still relatively new to him. Beane said Rousseau and 2020 second-round pick AJ Epenesa project as the Bills' starting defensive ends of the future, with 2019 seventh-round pick Darryl Johnson providing rotational depth.


Round 2, No. 61 overall: Carlos Basham Jr., DE, Wake Forest

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Carlos Basham Jr.'s NFL draft profile

Check out the best highlights from Wake Forest DE Carlos Basham Jr.'s college career.

My take: Bills GM Brandon Beane watched the Tampa Bay Buccaneers win the Super Bowl by harassing the quarterback of the team that eliminated Buffalo -- and clearly, it made an impact. Beane used his second consecutive pick on a defensive end as Buffalo looks to unseat Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs atop the AFC.

Basham recorded 20.5 sacks in his career, plays with a high motor and could be disruptive as an interior pass-rusher alongside Oliver. Buffalo clearly wants to get creative in how it pressures opposing quarterbacks and is stockpiling the players to do so.


Round 3, No. 93 overall: Spencer Brown, OT, Northern Iowa

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Spencer Brown's NFL draft profile

Check out the best highlights from Northern Iowa OT Spencer Brown's college career.

My take: You're not going to find many humans larger than Brown. Listed at 6-foot-8, 311 pounds, He is a powerful potential swing tackle -- something the Bills need after Ty Nsekhe left in free agency. After four years at the FCS level, it might take Brown some time to adjust to a much higher caliber of play, but Buffalo won't need him to contribute right away with Dion Dawkins and Daryl Williams locked up for at least the next three seasons.

If he develops quickly, however, he gives the Bills not only a towering presence, but a potential out from Williams' contract if cap space gets tight in western New York.


Round 5, No. 161 overall: Tommy Doyle, OT, Miami (OH)

My take: After taking a swing tackle in the third round, the Bills double-up with another massive offensive tackle in Doyle. The 6-foot-8, 320-pound Doyle is somewhat raw but will be in a low-pressure situation in which he can develop into an intriguing depth piece in the long run.


Round 6, No. 203 overall: Marquez Stevenson, WR, Houston

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Marquez Stevenson's NFL draft profile

Check out highlights from Houston's Marquez Stevenson as he looks to be a top prospect in the 2021 NFL draft.

My take: Speed kills and the Bills are hoping Stevenson's defining trait will turn him into a home-run hitter in the near future. The Houston product is not the most crisp route runner, has a lengthy injury history and could improve as a pass-catcher but as is the theme for several Buffalo draft picks, he won't be relied on to contribute right away and can learn from a stacked receiver room. He could, however, take over as the Bills' starting kick returner right away after averaging 36 yards per return last year.


Round 6, No. 212 overall: Damar Hamlin, S, Pittsburgh

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Damar Hamlin's NFL draft profile

Check out the best highlights from Pittsburgh safety Damar Hamlin's college career.

My take: Buffalo taps the Pittsburgh pipeline for the second year in a row, this time taking the aggressive, run-stopping safety in the sixth round. Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer are signed for at least the next two seasons, so he is more of a depth addition and potential special teams contributor.


Round 6, No. 213 overall: Rachad Wildgoose, CB, Wisconsin

My take: Besides having arguably the best last name in the draft, Wildgoose provides value as a slot cornerback -- which the Bills may need next season depending on what happens with incumbent starter Taron Johnson. Wildgoose is a physical corner -- to a fault at times -- but he gives Buffalo a developmental player if Johnson leaves in free agency.


Round 7, No. 236 overall: Jack Anderson, OL, Texas Tech

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Jack Anderson's NFL draft profile

Watch some of the best plays from Texas Tech's Jack Anderson.

My take: If you're sensing a theme among the Bills' draft picks, you're not wrong. Buffalo clearly wanted to add future depth and possible starting-caliber talent on both sides of the line of scrimmage. Anderson is a good run-blocker who transitioned to center during the week of the Senior Bowl -- exactly the type of versatility the Bills covet in a lineman.